Dhoni quits as CSK captain, Jadeja takes over

MS Dhoni on Thursday decided to hand over the captaincy of CSK to Jadeja. The star all-rounder, who has been an integral part of Chennai Super Kings since 2012

Days ahead of the start of the 2022 season of the Indian Premier League, Chennai Super Kings four-time IPL winning captain M.S. Dhoni has stepped down from the post of captaincy that he has held for 14 years.  The team released a statement saying that Dhoni is handing over the role of captain to national team all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, who has been part of the team since 2012. Jadeja becomes only the third player to captain the team, Suresh Raina being the other. Dhoni will continue to play this season but will take a lesser role as the team prepares for life after the legendary captain.

MS Dhoni passes CSK baton to Ravindra Jadeja | Cricket News - Times of India
Credits: Times Of India

The 2011 World Cup-winning skipper has been synonymous with the team ever since he was bought in the first IPL auction in 2008. There was much speculation last year about the 40-year-old’s involvement in the upcoming edition of the IPL, but the rumors of his exit were put to rest when the team retained him ahead of the mega auction. Jadeja, 33, is still an active member of the national team and will take over the mantle of a side that he has shone for over the last nine years.

Chennai Super Kings, the defending champions, will take on Kolkata Knight Riders in the opening match of the 2022 season on March 26, Saturday. Former India cricketer Subramaniam Badrinath feels MS Dhoni has taken a wise decision to hand over the leadership of Chennai Super Kings to Ravindra Jadeja as the charismatic skipper will still be playing and will have time to groom the all-rounder for the captaincy role and help him in taking on-field decisions. Ahead of the start of the IPL 2022, the 40-year-old Dhoni on Thursday decided to hand over the captaincy of CSK to Jadeja.

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Dhoni Will Have Time to Groom Jadeja

The star all-rounder, who has been an integral part of Chennai Super Kings since 2012, will only be the third player to lead the Chennai-based franchise after Dhoni and Suresh Raina. Dhoni, under whom the CSK has registered a record 121 wins in 204 matches in the IPL, will continue to represent the franchise this season and beyond. The 41-year old Badrinath, who played under the captaincy of Dhoni at CSK, feels that the captaincy progression is a logical decision considering Mahi is no longer at the peak of his career.

IPL 2022: CSK's 'Thala' MS Dhoni gets his timing right one last time
Credits: Mid Day

“There is definitely some planning in what MS Dhoni does and he would’ve certainly thought about it for the last year or so. The announcement has come now but it probably was in the pipeline. Jadeja is a senior player now and playing in all three formats for India. I am sure he will do well and Dhoni is also there on the field so that will be a great backbone for Jaddu,” Badrinath told IANS at the sidelines of the National Poker Series. The cricketer-turned commentator is spending some quality time while playing poker in Goa before he joins the host broadcaster for IPL 2022.

The stylish batter also spoke about the natural progression of cricketers and how Dhoni can groom Jadeja in the upcoming IPL season and help him in taking decisions. “It’s a natural progression, every cricketer has to go through this and we all know MS Dhoni is not at the peak of his career. So it was going to happen at some point or another. Perhaps, it’s his last season.. we don’t know so we have to look for a captain,” he said.

“It’s better when MS is there and he can groom a captain rather than when he is not there and Jadeja is left on the field all alone. It’s a wise decision when MS is already on the field and he can help Jadeja,” he added. Dhoni, who was the most expensive buy at the inaugural IPL auction held in February 2008, has been the skipper of CSK right through all the IPL seasons the franchise has participated. Under his leadership, CSK won the IPL trophy on four occasions – 2010, 2011, 2018, and 2021. Moreover, CSK also ended up as the runners-up on five occasions – 2008, 2012, 2013, 2015, and 2019.